Keep autumn colds at bay with nine remedies doctors swear by. The season of runny noses, sore throats and hacking coughs is here. So if it's preventing or treating colds, truth be told, nature's got the best!
A natural immune booster, zinc works in the human body to minimise viral activity. It can prevent the reproduction of viral cells in the mucous membranes of the upper respiratory system. And it works best for both colds and flu.
Suck on 15 to 30 milligrams of zinc lozenges when you start experiencing symptoms such as a runny nose or sore throat. Suck on one at least every four hours.
Echinacea is a herb we get from the purple coneflower family, and it fights off cold and flu. According to research, Echinacea can reduce the risk of a cold infection by 58% and shortens the duration of a cold by one to one and half days.
Echinacea is best for prevention. Before the cold and flu seasons, take it consistently for three weeks and break for a week. Repeat the pattern during the cold and flu seasons.
3. VITAMIN C
Perhaps, nature's best remedy for autumn colds. However, research has discovered that it works best to prevent colds than to treat them. You can find Vitamin C in many fruits and veggies. It is an antioxidant which fights free radicals and enables the immune system to function.
Take 1000 milligrams of Vitamin C three times a day (a total of 3000 milligrams daily) during the prime cold season (from December to February). Or you can take the same dosage from the end of November to late March or early April if the winter comes early.
The enzymes in bees' saliva and flower pollen produce honey. It is a powerhouse for antioxidants, which means it boosts immune function. Plus, it has both antiviral and antibacterial properties, all of which make it a potent cold-fighter. Honey is best for coughs and gets rid of the secondary bacterial infections associated with colds and flu.
Put two tablespoons of honey into a cup of warm water or green tea. You can add two drops of lemon juice to the drink to up your Vitamin C intake. Drink it two times a day.
5. CHICKEN SOUP
Of all the remedies, chicken soup is the most universal. Almost every culture has its own recipe for broth. The thing about chicken soup is that the chicken and veggies prevent the bronchial tubes from being inflamed. The inflammation is what leads to coughs and congestion. An amino acid chicken soup also works like the acetylcysteine drug, which is is used to treat bronchitis and other lung diseases. In addition, the heat from the soup helps to relieve runny noses, coughs, sneezing and sore throat.
Drink as much as you can to make you feel better (and enjoy it while you are at it!).
6. GINGER TEA
Ginger, which is the root of the ginger plant, is a powerhouse for gingerols. These are compounds that fight pain, inflammation and viruses. According to a John Hopkins University study, ginger restrains inflammatory compounds. Besides, the good thing about ginger tea is that it gives your body the fluids it need when you have colds and flu, without sugar.
Put two teaspoons of ground ginger in a cup of hot water. Let it cool off a little but with some steam. Drink 3 cups max daily to relieve cough, sore throat and runny nose.
Another remedy for autumn colds is spices. Spices such as garlic, peppers, and turmeric have anti-inflammatory properties, which is why they can suppress irritations in the nose, throat and upper respiratory tract. For instance, hot chilli peppers contain capsaicin, the substance which makes peppers hot. And this research proofs can clear up congested noses by increasing the glandular secretions in the nose which thins out mucous. Garlic also fights viruses by tearing down virus cell walls before they get into the body.
- Half a garlic bulb and breath in the fumes.
- For turmeric, add a teaspoon of it to a glass of warm milk. Drink it twice daily (morning and evening).
- For hot peppers, add some jalapenos to a stir-fry or as a pizza topping, and soon you will have some relief.
Nothing beats the effect of steam on stuffy noses. Steam opens up the sinuses and airways to make breathing better. It cannot destroy cold and flu viruses though it does a good job clearing up noses.
- Hold your head above a pan of hot steaming water while breathing through your nose. You can cover your head with a towel to lock in the steam for much longer. And you can also add a peeled potato to the hot water just before the water begins to boil. A substance in the potato works like an expectorant and will make you cough out mucous.
- You can also run a hot shower or bath and sit in it, breathing in the steam for 15 minutes.
9. EUCALYPTUS OIL
Eucalyptus oil comes from the eucalyptus tree found in Australia. The oil owes its potency to cineole, a compound that fights bacteria, viruses and fungi. According to research, the oil can reduce viral infection, which leads to colds and flu.
Hold your head above a bowl or basin of hot water with a few (4 to 5) drops of eucalyptus oil poured into it. Cover your head with a towel and breathe in the steam for five minutes. Do this twice a day and no more than that!
- Do not overdo breathing in steamed water with eucalyptus. Certain compounds in eucalyptus can be dangerous for the liver. And people with liver complications should steer clear of eucalyptus.
Disclaimer: The information shared by this post is for informational purposes only. It is not meant to be professional medical advice nor a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Consult your physician concerning anything you have read here.
By Nana Ama Afoa Osae I Writer I GreatWonderful Team
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